This year's Jan Wolkers Prize, the prize for the best nature book, goes to

Hans Mulder's

The Discovery of Nature

.

The prize was awarded on Sunday morning during a live broadcast of the NPO Radio 1 program

Early Birds

from the Hortus Botanicus in Leiden.

The Discovery of Nature

consists of twenty stories about how the view of nature in the world has changed over the centuries. Jury chairman Jean-Pierre Geelen called the winner a "race storyteller". "Mulder writes in an accessible manner and thus knows how to keep the reader interested in a book for a long time - aided by touches of irony and a large collection of illustrations and classic prints," says Geelen.

"I am not only happy and proud, but also bewildered", Mulder responds. "I think it's so fantastic, I was already so happy that I ended up on the shortlist". In

The Discovery of Nature

, Mulder describes twenty richly illustrated stories about birds, insects, bacteria and dragons, based on studies from the early sixteenth century. Mulder is considering making a sequel, possibly about useful animals and the underwater world that he has not yet covered in his prize-winning book.

There were four more nominees for this ninth edition of the Jan Wolkers Prize. The prize is an initiative of

Vroege Vogels

, the World Wildlife Fund and

de Volkskrant

. The winner will receive €51,000 and an original drawing of the winner, made by Siegfried Woldhek. The jury consists of Karina Wolkers, Allard Stapel (World Wildlife Fund), Jean-Pierre Geelen (

de Volkskrant

) and Daniel Gulpers (

Early Birds

).

More than 130 books were submitted this year, which were published between June 1 last year and June 1 this year.

These include field guides, monographs, children's books, poetry collections, reference works and novels.

Last year Valerie Trouet won with

What trees tell us

.

In 2019 Marente de Moor won the prize with

Foon

and in 2018 it was Menno Schilthuizen with the book

Darwin in the city

.

Keywords: jan wolkers prize, nature book, geelen., hans mulder, nature, discovery, prize, the discovery of nature, program, broadcast, jean-pierre geelen, books, npo, radio 1, initiative